The Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) has asked every Muslim in the country to be on lookout for the new moon for the Eid el-Fitri celebration.
In a statement signed by Is-haq Oloyede, secretary-general of the council, Oloyede said the council, under Sa’ad Abubakar, leadership of the Sultan of Sokoto, had enjoined all Muslims to look for the moon.
Oloyede said the Sultan has therefore put in place a National Moon Sighting Committee (NMSC) to that effect.
The Shehu of Borno and NSCIA deputy president-general is among the 34 eminent Muslims across the country as members of the committee.
“NMSC has advised the President-General that the crescent of Shawwal should be searched for on Monday, July 4, 2016 equivalent to 29th Ramadan 1437 AH,” the statement read.
“If the crescent is actually sighted by informed persons on Monday night and His Eminence is so advised by the experts, he would declare Tuesday, July 5, 2016 as the first day of Shawwal (‘Id day).
“If, however, the crescent is not sighted on Monday night, Wednesday, July 6, 2016 automatically becomes the first of Shawwal 1437 AH (‘Id day).”
He said as soon as the NMSC confirmed the sighting of the crescent, the committee would advise the president-general of the NSCIA, who will announce the completion of Ramadan and the observance of `Idul-Fitri’ prayer.
The secretary-general also said Muslims should see it as necessity, paying `Zakatul-Fitri’ with the intention of lifting the hearts of the indigent members of the community.